Kaiser Family Foundation

When $500,000 in Social Security and Medicare Benefits Isn’t Enough

A typical American turning 65 this year is in line to receive about $500,000 in lifetime Social Security and Medicare benefits. That's more than $1 million for older couples. But many still won’t have enough money to pay for out-of-pocket medical care and long-term supports and services. While the wealthiest seniors will have the resources to pay these hefty out-of-pocket costs, most older adults won’t [...]

By |2015-09-22T10:06:39-04:00September 22nd, 2015|long-term care financing|0 Comments

What Medicare and Medicaid’s Ratings Say About Nursing Homes

For all of its flaws, Medicare and Medicaid’s Nursing Home Compare five-star rating system gives consumers a head-start when searching for a facility. Now, the Kaiser Family Foundation has taken a closer look at the ratings, and reached some interesting conclusions: In a system that rates facilities from 1-5 stars, about one-third have low 1 or 2 star ratings, while [...]

By |2015-05-20T14:20:57-04:00May 20th, 2015|nursing homes|1 Comment

The Boom in Medicare Managed Care

Despite the fears of consumer advocates and the predictions of many insurance companies, seniors are flocking to Medicare Advantage managed care plans. It shouldn’t be a surprise since premiums for these policies are a fraction of the cost of traditional fee-for-service Medicare. This shift may be one driver of the recent slowdown in the growth of health care costs and [...]

By |2013-11-27T20:12:30-05:00November 27th, 2013|Aging, Care Coordination, Medicare|1 Comment

The Promise and Risks of Medicare Managed Care

In 2012, about 13 million seniors participated in Medicare Advantage (MA) managed care plans—about 27 percent of the Medicare population and twice as many as were enrolled just seven years ago. This rapid shift to managed care by seniors may be just a first step towards a fundamental change in the way Medicare is delivered and financed. And it has the [...]

By |2012-12-26T16:36:45-05:00December 26th, 2012|Care Coordination, Health Care, Medicare|0 Comments

States Expand their Medicaid Community-Based Services but Their Benefits Vary Widely

Slowly but surely, more people who receive Medicaid benefits for long-term supports and services are getting their care at home rather than in nursing facilities. Still, only about 3.3 million seniors and younger people with disabilities who require long-term care get such help at home—about 1 million more than in 2000. Overall, the program now spends about $50 billion or [...]

Medicaid and the Frail Elderly

Medicaid is in the budget bull’s eye. But many lawmakers aiming to cut the program have no idea what it does, and how important it is to frail seniors who need help with daily living. The popular image of Medicaid: health care for a poor mother and her children. The all-too-common reality: long-term supports and services for an 85-year old [...]

By |2012-11-19T14:11:59-05:00November 19th, 2012|Aging, Federal senior services programs, Medicaid|1 Comment

Integrating Health Care and Long-Term Care

Let me tell you about Frank. At  86, he has heart disease, diabetes, and kidney failure. He lives at home but struggles with the 16 medications he must take every day. He could also use some social support--maybe an adult day program, help shopping, or just somebody to keep him company. What Frank needs most of all is somebody who can help organize all of his medical [...]

Long-Term Care Services: Forgotten By Most Presidential Candidates

Long-term care services are not on the front burner of the Presidential campaign. They are not on the back burner. They are, it seems, not even on the stove.   Most presidential candidates don't care enough about long-term care services to bother to describe their views on issue. Of the five candidates surveyed by 15 national advocacy groups only two--President Obama and former [...]

The Good and Bad News About Aging in Place

Government funding for programs to support aging in place was still growing through 2008, but much more slowly than in the past. At the same time, states were making it harder to enroll, limiting benefits, and forcing  people to wait longer before they could participate in these programs. And all that was happening before Medicaid home care faced major budget cuts in the face [...]

By |2011-12-14T20:58:39-05:00December 14th, 2011|aging in place, Medicaid|1 Comment

Why Do So Many Nursing Home Residents End up in the Hospital?

More than half of long-term care residents in skilled nursing facilities made at least one emergency room visit in 2006. A quarter had two or more. Even more troubling, 38 percent were admitted to the hospital at least once that year, and nearly half were admitted twice or more. In all, one-quarter of all hospitalizations for nursing home residents were potentially preventable. These very [...]

By |2010-10-12T19:31:25-04:00October 12th, 2010|Medicare, nursing homes|0 Comments